The year 2023 was marked by a record increase in resources provided by the state government to finance programs and projects in the field of science and technology. With an increase of 290% compared to the previous year, the budget of the Parana Fund for Scientific and Technological Development increased from R$129.5 million in 2022 to R$505.1 million this year. The Paraná Fund is administered by the Secretariat of Science, Technology and Higher Education (SETI), and is annually composed of 2% of tax revenues, as stipulated by the state constitution.
In January, the Annual Budget Law (LOA), a system for estimating revenues and authorizing government expenditures, according to revenue projections, indicated a budget allocation of R$411.7 million for science and technology in 2023. The amount was increased in November and December. December. This is done by opening a supplementary appropriation for the state’s financial budget. For 2024, the supply order indicates a new increase of R$ 708.9 million.
Another improvement implemented in 2023 concerns the use of resources, since until the previous year, a quarter of the entire amount expected for the Paraná Fund was used for scientific and technological projects. In an unprecedented way Law No. 21,354/2023approved by Governor Carlos Massa Ratinho Jr., granted absolute monetary percentages to science and technology in Paraná, expanding the state's investment capacity in this sector.
The resources are allocated to initiatives undertaken by institutions of higher education and scientific and technological research, both public and private, located in the Paraná Region. To submit proposals, the State Council of Science and Technology of Paraná (CCT Paraná) identified priority areas: agriculture and agribusiness; Biotechnology and health; Renewable energy; Smart cities; Society, education and economy. The evaluation also looks at the impact on digital transformation and project sustainability.
For Paraná's Secretary of State for Science, Technology and Higher Education, Aldo Nelson Bona, this record volume of investments represents a government commitment to research infrastructure. “The government remains committed to investing resources to strengthen the scientific and technological research infrastructure in Paraná, in order to further contribute to the implementation of public policies that generate tangible results for society and the productive business sector with technological and sustainable bases.” .
distribution – Of the total resources of the Paraná Fund, 50% were directed to strategic actions, projects and programs presented to Citi, through the Paraná Mis Ciencia programme, expected in the Multi-Year Plan (PPA) 2020-2023. The rest of the budget is shared between other government institutions working in the areas of research and innovation, such as the Araucaria Foundation for the Support of Scientific and Technological Development and the Parana Institute of Technology (TECPAR), both of which are linked to SETI.
The new legislation of 2023 has made it possible to involve other institutions in the activation of science and technology resources, in addition to the Araucaria Foundation and TECPAR. At 25%, the Secretariat for Innovation, Modernization and Digital Transformation (SEI) now shares in this budget allocation; Institute of Rural Development of Paraná (IDR Paraná), linked to the Secretariat of Agriculture and Supply (Seab); and the Parana Institute for Economic and Social Development (Ipardes), linked to the Secretariat of Planning (SEPL).
Investment package – In 2023, Citi launched a project Investment package In the amount of R $ 60.4 million, distributed over nine public calls published by the Paraná Fund. The notices have been prepared with a focus on entrepreneurship, promotion of postgraduate studies, extension, organic certification, foreign language teaching, multi-user laboratories, inclusion and accessibility, and anti-university dropout.
Another public appeal made R$31 million available from the Paraná Fund for Scientific and Technological Support for research and development projects, within the framework of the Program for Stimulating Actions for the Integration of Universities, Enterprises, Government and Society, called the Agency for Regional Sustainable Development and Innovation (Agioni).
Among the 530 projects approved as of November this year is the implementation of a laboratory for research and production of inputs for veterinary diagnostics at Tecpar, which received an investment of R$ 43.4 million from the Paraná Fund. With the aim of providing Brazil with strategic inputs for the National Program for the Control and Eradication of Bovine Brucellosis and Tuberculosis, the new structure will meet the requirements of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAPA) and the National Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA).
Another project, worth R$7.6 million, is related to structuring research programs in the field of genetic improvement of plants. The initiative, proposed by the IDR, consists of the acquisition of machinery and equipment necessary for sowing operations, management of plant technology and harvesting for field trials, with a focus on making new varieties available to agribusiness and innovations for the main production chains in Paraná.
Among the various ideas presented by higher education institutions, the State University of Maringa (UEM) received R$ 10.3 million for the structural revitalization of the academic cluster to develop teaching, research and extension activities. The State University of North Paraná (UENP) has won R$5.7 million for the establishment of a research laboratory center on its Jacarezinho Campus.
Policy – This year, the government also launched a public consultation to prepare the Paraná State Science, Technology and Innovation Policy. The initiative closed on December 8, and received 415 contributions from citizens and people associated with public and private universities and innovation-promoting environments in Paraná. Proposals are currently being consolidated to support a draft that will be presented at the next regular meeting of the CCT Paraná, scheduled for March 2024.
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